MBA student Kathrin Hanzl: Young women - build your own empire!

  READING TIME: 5 MINUTES  

Interview with Kathrin Hanzl
Professional Moderator and MBA student at Modul University Vienna

Don’t wait for someone to find you. Be aware of your own skills and abilities. Be your best authentic self, have a vision, realise your power and build your own empire!


What drives you to be a moderator and MBA student?

Being a moderator and PR manager allows me to tell remarkable stories. I enjoy interpreting a company’s success story and sharing it with the right audience. Working with so many different people from various departments and industries means I am constantly developing. Being part of Modul University Vienna’s MBA program means I can expands my horizons both in and out of the classroom.

What challenges do women still face in the business sector and why should more young girls and women get into business related subjects?

Unfortunately, inequality between women and men still exists. Despite dozens of directives and strategies being developed by the European Commission to promote gender equality, the European Parliament noticed little improvement. In the labour market women are still over-represented in lower paid sectors and under-represented in decision-making positions.

One of the main challenges is the glass ceiling, the invisible barrier that keeps women from climbing beyond a certain level in a corporate’s hierarchy. The glass ceiling is closely tied to an inequality in pay, outdated gender stereotypes around job positions and with male-dominated working environments. This definitely makes it harder for women to succeed when it comes to personnel decisions.

We need more women in decision-making positions in order to provide young women and also young men with female role models in business, and neutralise a “male working culture”. We still have a long way to go, as several studies indicate – female managers often adapt their working style to this male-dominated working environment in order to succeed and as a result, perpetuate those standards and norms.

How did you get to the position you are in today?

It was a long way with many ups and downs. However, I followed my own path, regularly expanded my knowledge and skills in order to achieve my goals, and used my love of communicating as a touchstone. I’m pleased to say that’s what I do today – I pass on my experience and knowledge in communication.

A crucial milestone was my bachelor degree in Tourism and Hospitality Management as well as starting my MBA degree, both with Modul University Vienna. The combination of two totally different study programs and lots of practical experience made me serve a specific market.

Moreover I earned a diploma as a trainer for adult education according to European standards – this was the point where I started to pass on my knowledge to others by moderating communication seminars.

What advice do you have for other women in your sector?

Don’t wait for someone to find you. Be aware of your own skills and abilities. Be your best authentic self, have a vision, realise your power and build your own empire!